Hailey Baldwin sued for trademark infringement over new skincare line’s name

Hailey Baldwin’s newest skincare line, Rhode, has been sued for trademark infringement by a New York fashion company which has the same name as her brand.

In court documents obtained by AP and E! News, the 25-year-old model is being sued for creating market confusion by marketing her skin care line under the Rhode name.

The complaint, filed by a New York-based clothing site founded in 2014, stated that there was “no doubt that [Baldwin] and her companies know of Rhode’s superior rights”.

Baldwin had “previously sought to acquire the Rhode mark,” noting that “the brands could not co-exist without confusion”, reads the document. However, Rhode’s founders Purna Khatau and Phoebe Vickers refused to give up their company’s name, “given the sacrifices they had made” to build their high-end clothing and accessories brand.

The document went on to claim that because Baldwin still decided to use the name Rhode for her skincare line, she “does not care that two other women entrepreneurs have been using the Rhode brand name for years”.

Khatau and Vickers argue that since Baldwin promoted her brand to her TikTok, YouTube, and Instagram account, it “will quickly swamp Rhode’s market presence, confuse the marketplace and ultimately destroy the goodwill and reputation of the RHODE brand”.

The businesswomen’s brand claims that its products have continued to sell in stores worldwide, such as Saks Fifth Avenue and Neiman Marcus, and have been worn by celebrities including Beyoncé, Mindy Kaling and Rihanna.

In an Instagram post shared on Tuesday, Rhode addressed the lawsuit and described how much work had been put into their business.

“Nine years ago, we quit our jobs and founded Rhode out of our apartment, creating a fashion company from nothing. We’re two women entrepreneurs who met in college, built the RHODE brand, and put years of hard work into our minority co-owned company,” the founders wrote in a statement.

The statement also directed a message towards Baldwin, as Rhode expressed how they’ve been wanting to “protect” their business and hope that the model would see the unintentional “harm” she’s done with her skincare’s name.

“We admire Hailey. She has worked hard and earned the ability to create her own skin-care line. We don’t want to sue Hailey; we want to celebrate her. As fellow women entrepreneurs, we wish her every success,” the clothing site continued.

“We’re confident in the lawsuit’s outcome, but we hope Hailey will now understand the harm we’re sure she never meant to cause and change her skin-care line’s brand. Thank you to everyone for valuing our vision and supporting us,” their statement concluded.

Baldwin, who chose Rhode because it’s her middle name and has familial signifiance, first launched her minimalist skincare line on 15 June. Her lineup of products include a serum, a moisturiser, and a lip treatment available in three scent options.

At the time of her company’s launch, Baldwin made an appearance on Good Morning America, where she explained the origin of her skincare company’s name and how she wanted it to be connected to her family and mother.

“The name came from, you know, obviously it’s my middle name—it’s also my mom’s middle name,” she explained. “So, I wanted there to be this tie into family lineage. I learned so much about skincare from my mom. She’s taught me so much about how to take care of my skin since I was a kid up until now.”


Douglas Mateo

Douglas holds a position as a content writer at Neptune Pine. His academic qualifications in journalism and home science have offered her a wide base from which to line various topics. He has a proficiency in scripting articles related to the Health industry, including new findings, disease-related, or epidemic-related news. Apart from this, Douglas writes an independent blog and assists people in living healthy life.

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